Just For Laughs is most likely the best festival in Montreal, Canada or the world. While it was yet another fun filled year the world’s best comedy, there were also some just as fun live concerts to entertain and let people just dance.
Kool & the Gang were the biggest act and crowd we had this year… or ever? Robert ‘Kool’ Bell thumped out funk basslines to major hits such as, Ladies Night, and Get Down It. Meanwhile ShawnyMac McQuiller, and Lavell Evans danced and traded off soulful lead vocals on other songs like Joanna, Cherish, and the evening’s opener, Fresh. Newest member, Walt Anderson, took lead vocals on Kool & the Gang’s latest (and great) hit, Sexy (which Walt also wrote). The tight horn section got to take solos playing and dancing. Trumpet player, Michael Ray even did a tumble. After a drum solo, several female dancers came out for the closing, Celebration. Fredy Varre and The Brooks, Alan Prater, were even spotted dancing in the audience. Kool & the Gang truly are the Funky Stuff. Let’s hope they come back again.
Russell Peters Old School MixtapeParty was a throwback to some popular rap and hip hop. This had to be a real dream come true for Peters as he hosted the party introducing some of his musical heroes growing up. He even admitted to having a poster of Lisa Lisa in his room when he was younger before he introduced her. DJ Spinbad who is one of the best DJ’s I’ve heard was spinning with beat-on precision all night. Naughty By Nature got down with O.P.P. and had everyone’s hands swaying for Hip Hop Hooray. Positive K along with Nice & Smooth made some brief appearances. The night really belonged to rap legend, Melle Mel. Listening to Mel rap his craft solidified why he is a a pioneer and inspiration to the hip hop community. In a separate gig right after, Russell Peters, himself DJ’d a party at the Melting Pot where Melle Mel, and the others came to dance, rap, sing until the late hours.
This year’s Just For Laughs had a disco party start off with none other than The Village People. Throughout the years there have been several changes in the line up but it doesn’t really matter since it’s more about the characters than the actual original members of which there are two, Alex Briley (officer) and Jose Felipe (Native American). At the end of the night everyone danced like it was the 70’s to Macho Man, In the Navy and of course Y.M.C.A.!
Thank you Bruce Hills and his amazing team at Just For Laughs. Let’s hope we get some more great live concerts in the future. This year was dance, next year some rock concerts ? … hmmm….
Thank you Just For Laughs and let’s hope we get some more great live concerts next year… hmmm….